Beauty and wellness fund Sekhmet Ventures makes a first fragrance investment

By Deanna Utroske contact

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images \ (Foryou13)
© Getty Images \ (Foryou13)
The venture capital fund, founded by Barbara Paldus, announced a new partnership today with a fragrance maker out of California. Together, Heretic Parfum and Sekhmet Ventures plan to grow the business globally.

In this deal, the startup fragrance brand Heretic Parfum has been in business longer than the investment fund. Douglas Little launched Heretic in 2016; while Sekhmet Ventures arrived on the scene in February of this year.

“We focus on companies with 100% natural and ultra-pure products backed by science,”​ Barbara Paldus, the VC firm’s founding partner, explained in comments to the press early this year. The firm’s first partner was Stamba, an organic food-based supplements and tea brand that promises to “[provide] powerful support to [their] clientele in living beautiful, balanced and joyous lives,” ​according to a blub about the brand on the Sekhmet Ventures’ site.

Natural fragrance

Sekhmet Ventures’ new partnership is also right in line with the firm’s mission. Heretic Parfums is a natural fragrance brand. And it recently added functional fragrance to its product portfolio with the launch of Dirty Grass, a scent blended with vetiver, lemon, and hemp: “15ml bottles contain 150mg of CBD oil,” ​according to the brand’s product page for the fragrance.

“The world-wide launch of Dirty Grass represents the ushering in of a new, natural-alternative category of functional fragrance that offers a dose of cannabidiol delivered transdermally,”​ Paldus notes in a media release announcing her firm’s partnership with Heretic Parfum.

“Heretic's unique product line is ultra-clean and the company has a unique vision for fragrance, combining sensory aspects with transdermal delivery,”​ believes Paldus. And she goes on to explain why the brand is a fit for Sekhmet Ventures, saying, “As an investment vehicle operating in the rapidly-growing, clean beauty and wellness space, Sekhmet is committed to empowering businesses like Heretic: innovators who are willing to break boundaries across different sciences to create new, health and wellness technology platforms. We're excited to make Heretic a part of the Sekhmet family, and to help Douglas Little, Heretic Founder, realize his vision on a global scale.”

Natural fit

Like many firms, Sekhmet Ventures offers more than just capital; the fund has sales and marketing professionals on staff to help partner brands succeed in the market place.

But what may really set this firm apart is that it also offers help with global distribution and related issues: “Its international distribution company minimizes [clients’] need to build a sales infrastructure and instead allows them to focus on brand building. Equally important and in connection with its distribution company, Sekhmet Ventures has assembled a team which supports its portfolio companies with expertise in manufacturing and regulatory compliance,”​ explains today’s media release.

All this may explain why Heretic Parfum founder Douglas Little tells the press, “We're thrilled at the opportunity to partner with Barbara and the Sekhmet team. [They have] the resources, experience, and network we need to bring our products to a larger audience that's seeking consciously designed products – and above all, all-natural ingredients that create unique fragrances without exposure to chemicals. We fully expect 2019 to mark the start of a positive, productive partnership for both Heretic and Sekhmet.”



Deanna Utroske, Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.

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